Today’s busy and noisy high streets were much quieter and safer 100 years ago. So before cars, what methods of transport ruled our streets? Before World War One, horses were used to get people and cargo around and about. For longer distances, steam trains whistled and whooshed as they chugged into stations to collect passengers and parcels. Even though motor buses and electric trams had become popular ways to travel, the war effort meant that horses and carts returned to make many of the deliveries of letters, parcels, laundry, milk, coal, beer, bread and groceries. Horse-drawn carriages or cabs were also used to carry passengers around town. However, bicycles would always be popular. Delivery boys still pedalled around town delivering parcels to homes and, when not patrolling the streets by foot, policemen cycled.
The class could research and produce a timeline of transport inventions and changes. They could write the diary of a cart horse from the perspective of the horse or the person, describing the sights and sounds of the streets and war stories from people they meet. They could be challenged to figure out how they would travel to various landmarks in their area if it were still the First World War.